Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Wild Bearded Iris
Iris germanica

Family: Iridaceae (eye-rid-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Iris (EYE-ris) (Info)
Species: germanica (jer-MAN-ih-kuh) (Info)

» View all varieties of Iris

One vendor has this plant for sale.

14 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tall Bearded (TB)

6-12 in. (15-30 cm)
12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)
15-18 in. (38-45 cm)
18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)
USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested
Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Early midseason (EM)
Midseason (M)


Other details:
May be a noxious weed or invasive
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Flowers are fragrant
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Flowers are good for cutting
Suitable for growing in containers

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Awards (if applicable):
Unknown - Tell us

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to view:

By Zaragoza
Thumbnail #1 of Iris germanica by Zaragoza

By Zaragoza
Thumbnail #2 of Iris germanica by Zaragoza

By Zaragoza
Thumbnail #3 of Iris germanica by Zaragoza

By harloiris
Thumbnail #4 of Iris germanica by harloiris


1 positive
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive poeciliopsis On Feb 28, 2015, poeciliopsis from Phoenix, AZ wrote:

Central Phoenix -- I grow what I believe is the "true species" of Iris germanica -- a smallish purple flower with yellow beard. However, the provenance of my original is lost in the mist of time. I grow it among succulents and it survives and thrives on amazingly little water and in strong afternoon sun. This shouldn't surprise me because you commonly see still-thriving iris beds at old homesteads in Arizona that have been deserted for 50 to 100 years.

Neutral harloiris On Nov 8, 2011, harloiris from Harlowton, MT wrote:

The trade list continues to be a catch all for unidentified iris, but there are true germanica's available from gardeners and from commercial growers.

Neutral Zaragoza On Nov 13, 2009, Zaragoza from Zaragoza
Spain (Zone 8b) wrote:

I can't believe it!!!!!!!!!!! Is not possible that this plant, extremely common in gardenery, was not present in DG until I added this file... Only a cv. of Irid germanica is present but not the "normal" one that is with big difference the most cultivated of all Iris of any kind (species or hybrids).

Editor's Note
There was an entry at one time, but it became a 'catch-all' entry for unidentified bearded Iris. Let's keep this entry for the true species. Thanks!


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Phoenix, Arizona
Hinsdale, Illinois
Harlowton, Montana
Concord, North Carolina
Mount Wolf, Pennsylvania

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